Category Archives: Baked Goods

Cherry Hand Pies

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

My Dad loves pies. I have vivid memories of going to Dupars in the Valley with my Dad when I was a little kid and ordering pie with him. He has hysterical stories that he tells about his interactions with the Dupar’s waitresses who I remember would wear uniforms with aprons. My dad is a charmer and I’m sure the old gals all loved him. I grew up thinking that my father’s favorite pies were banana cream pie and chocolate cream pie. Although it’s true that he loves those, his deepest pie dream is Cherry pie. I did not learn this until two months ago. Since then I have been working to perfect my crust and pie making ability. My Father is now 88-years old – not bad for a guy who has been smoking Marlborogh cigarettes for...

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Gwyneth’s Mother’s Cookies

Monday, 22 August 2016

I was at my friend Pam’s house for dinner last week and I started looking through her cook book collection. The books were all really clean - pristine clean in fact. I immediately felt self-conscious and incompetent because mine are always full of flour and sugar and oil splatters and greasy fingerprints and crumbs. I am just a mess of a cook and a cookbook wrecker. While I was looking through the pretty, clean cookbooks I noticed a few cook books by Gwyneth Paltrow which I thought was ridiculous and I expressed shock and disgust that she Pam, the amazing, smart, erudite Pam, would own a cook book by a movie star. Really Pam? I just thought: 'how dumb is that.' I mean Gwyneth Paltrow is an actress for goodness sakes - she is not a...

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Helene’s Chocolate Brownies And Khai’s Send-Off

Thursday, 23 October 2014

I really like reading David Lebovitz’s blog. Someone set it up so that it automatically pops up in my email. I think Sele Nadel-Hayes did that for me. Various people help me in various ways with my computer. Sele is one of my helpers. Issa is another. Alex is another. Jared is another. Etc. I also like David Lebovitz’s app ‘Living the Sweet Life in Paris’ – especially when I’m in Paris. The app is about pastry shops, sweet shops, etc. from David Lebovitz’s view. I like his view. Lebovitz is a Chez Panisse trained chef living now in Paris – so he’s got the chops to know food and to talk about it. He’s charming. He’s witty. He knows his stuff. His blog has typos in it. I’m always happy reading...

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Baked Apples With Dried Apricots And Almonds

Sunday, 19 October 2014

I told my brother Phil that my ‘book group’ was coming over for dinner and that I was making baked apples for dessert. He didn’t think that was a very interesting dessert and made some comment about what’s the big deal about putting an apple in the oven and turning the oven on. That is NOT a baked apple. This is a baked apple... Baked Apples with Dried Apricots and Almonds (-Cooks Illustrated 1/1/2010) Ingredients: 7 large Granny Smith Apples or another tart-ish apple with flavor 6 Tsp butter, softened ¼ cup packed brown sugar 1/3 cup dried apricots chopped 1/3 cup almonds or walnuts coarsely chopped and toasted 3 Tbsp oats 1 tsp grated orange zest 1 tsp vanilla pinch salt 1/3 cup maple syrup 1/3...

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Better Than Brownies

Thursday, 31 July 2014

I really haven’t been cooking much this month. I’m a little sluggish I guess and not many mouths around to feed. And then I had my wisdom teeth pulled…. All four of them...A real appetizer killer. Anyway...I did find this morsel of a recipe which has been well received. The Judge liked it – what else could you ask for?! Pecan Brownie Brittle Preheat over to 325° Ingredients: 2 oz unsweetened chocolate 1/3 cup butter 1 cup sugar 1 tsp vanilla ½ cup unbleached flour ¼ tsp salt ¼ tsp baking soda 2 egg whites ½ cup pecans chopped a handful of cocoa nibs finishing salt like Maldon Directions: Line a baking sheet with parchment and spray with coconut oil or another baking spray. Place butter and...

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Crispy Chocolate Cookies

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Half-way through the month and all I have to write about is chocolate cookies. Sad. Crispy chocolate cookies. Chocolate cookies with cornmeal because I’m on that cornmeal textural kick thing. Chococlate cookies with two kinds of chocolate – unsweetened melted and cocoa powder. Chocolate cookies with two kinds of sugar, granulated and confectioners sugar. Really great cookies. In a way they reminded me of the cookies my mom used to make her chocolate cookie, whipped cream concoction that she would refrigerate and then slice on the diagonal. That was so good. Remember that Phil? Eric? Disa? Jamie? Mom? Dad? Anyway. . . a couple things happened this past weekend that made me want to bake. The first thing was that Khai...

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Polenta Cookies

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

I’m kind of on a cornmeal in dessert kick. Don’t know why. Last month I hunted for the perfect cornmeal olive oil cake. This month it’s cornmeal cookies. I just couldn’t make them until I had a reason and Saturday night was the perfect opportunity. Our friends Mary and Pablo (Pablo the famous electrician and tamale maker extraordinaire) invited us for dinner. My contribution was a salad and that’s it but I somehow felt compelled to bring dessert too – that part struck me at 5:00 pm and we were to be there between 6:00 and 6:30. The pressure was on. I had been staring at a Polenta Cookie recipe for quite some time - from Food52 - submitted by someone named Emiko and it looked like I could get it done in the right...

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Mandelbrod Aka Mondel Broidt

Thursday, 08 May 2014

My Mother-in-law Ellie Seltzer, wife of the late Bernie Seltzer (father-in-law and beloved father of my dear darling husband), has been in town visiting with us. Having Ellie here has been a total treat. Why did we ever wait so long to bring her out for a visit. Ellie is awesome and enjoyable and an excellent houseguest and kind and wise. We love her and have loved having her here. One of the things that I enjoy enormously when we go visit Ellie in Florida – besides being around her - is her mandelbrod. Jewish biscotti – for those of you who have no idea what a mandelbrod is. Ellie is an amazing mandelbrod maker and she’s promised me for years that she will teach me. Well this trip was the perfect opportunity but then all of...

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Orange Cornmeal Olive Oil Cake

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

I have been wanting to make an olive oil cake for a long time. I’ve been reading recipes for months – truly. I had in my mind that an olive oil cake would be dense, simply rich – not heavy rich - flavorful, moist and elegant. I have never eaten an olive oil cake before to my knowledge but I just had in my mind what it would taste like. I really wanted to make one but I was also wary because I didn’t want to be disappointed if it didn’t turn out moist and delicious. Well...Ellie’s visit prompted me (Ellie is my mother-in-law – Alan’s step-mom who is visiting us from Florida. I wrote about her previously). Tonight, Sunday, - Easter Sunday by the way - the kids came to celebrate and visit Ellie and I needed...

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Berkeley Cheese Board Scones

Monday, 28 April 2014

Ellie came for a visit. We had been waiting for her for weeks. Ellie is Alan’s Father’s wife. I don’t think she has been out in 10-years – since our wedding. So much has happened in her life and in ours since then. Most notably – Bernie, her husband, Alan’s dad, passed away. He was a wonderful, interesting, charismatic man and my husband Alan loved him so much – so did Ellie. He died in his sleep. So peaceful. We haven’t seen Ellie in a couple years – the last time was when we were on our way to Cuba – with Alex and we stopped in Florida for a visit with her. We have been wanting to have her out for quite some time and it finally worked out. Ellie is amazing. She is 89-years old and lives in Boynton Beach Florida,...

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